This article contains information about the 10 important factors to consider when writing your Curriculum Vitae (CV).
CV is a very common term amongst job seekers. It is one of the very important documents required during a job search and as such it is advisable to have a standard CV .CV is an acronym for curriculum vitae, and is a written detailed document of your professional life, highlighting the professional and academic history used whenever you are looking for employment or to sell yourself to prospective employers. It includes your professional history, personal skills, abilities and achievements and majorly your competencies that make you fit for employment.
Having numerous company’s and individuals who specialize in CV creation, anyone can pay to get a standard CV. However, it is important take into cognizance some important factors while writing a CV.
So have you wondered why you are always rejected or never called for the next stage? Maybe you should take into consideration the following:
FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN WRITING YOUR CURRICULUM VITAE (CV)
One of the factors to consider when writing your CV is the number of pages. Your employers would most certainly have dozens of CVs to review, coupled with their own job tasks. It can be very boring reading long epistles about a person you have not met before especially when it is not an autobiography.
So, when writing your CV, consider your readers, it shouldn’t be too long. Make each point very concise, clear and in bullet points. It shouldn’t be more than 2 or 3 pages irrespective of your years of experience.
Even though the CV is more detailed than a resume, you must keep it short and simple. For instance, when you are talking about your job experience at your former job, go straight to the major task you were assigned and if there were turning points you think are relevant to your career and new job placement, you should add it, but it must be succinct.
2. Personal Profile
Your personal profile should be the first part of your CV and not the side of the page or last. The selection committee wants to know you first. It should include your full name, phone number, home address, gender and email address. You should also be careful to add other physical features if requested deliberately by your prospective employers. The order at which you write them matters, they give a first and lasting impression of you. The name should always come first and can be in bolder fonts compared to the others.
How do you format your CV? This might look unnecessary, but it is an important factor to consider. No company is interested in a young graduate who does not know how to use fonts properly. How then would he or she prepare a communiqué after a staff’s meeting? When writing your CV, do not overuse colour (two colours are okay) and ensure that you stick to a particular font. This must be arranged properly even if the headers would have a different size from the other texts. If possible, you could check the company’s website for their own unique font and colour, this would give the company the impression that you have done your homework by doing research into the values and objectives of the company and you are very ready to get the job.
4. Academic History
This is another important part of your document. You must prove that you have acquired the right academic qualification to fit into the job. Provide details of your academic history in reverse chronological order; this includes your academic achievements from the last to the first, i.e. post-doctoral program, graduate school, undergraduate school and high school. Note that it should only include your most recent two educational experiences. So if you have a Master’s degree, just your Undergraduate and Master’s degree is sufficient. It should include the name of your Alma Mata, course of study and grade if you think it is necessary. These would help the interview committee know if you have the necessary skill to fit the job position.
5. Professional Experience
Your selection committee is interested in where you have worked in the past and your competencies, it would define their judgment of you are right for the job or not. Record your professional experience; list the companies or organizations you’ve worked in, stating the title of the job and the dates you were employed, your role, experience and achievements this should not be in more than three or four bullet points. Make sure your achievement or job activities reflect the job description of the new job. For example, if you were an accountant and you’re applying for a job as an Auditor, they do almost similar things, but your past experiences must prove that you can thrive as an auditor.
6. Skills and Qualification
Do not forget to include relevant skills and qualification; this can be on a separate section, go through the job description thoroughly and highlight the most important skills the employers are looking for. If you have taken online courses or certifications in courses outside your course and you think it is relevant to the job, you should add it. As a Computer science graduates, it is expected that you take certification courses after their undergraduate degree, your various certifications and year of completion should be provided on your CV. It is an added advantage
7. Honours and Awards
You can also outline your achievements in the field related to your application, start with the name of the award followed by the dates received, then the name of the organization that gave the award. Do not provide further details of how and why you were granted the award, which is not necessary. For example, if you were a recipient of the academic award while in school, it is not necessary to tell your prospective why you got the award. The name of the award it enough and if they are interested in further details, they could ask during the interview session.
8. Publications and presentations
If there are any include relevant citations of presentations, papers, studies, books or other publications important to your professional history. These would be very relevant if you want to serve in a university or any other academic environment.
There are stories of applicants who provided “fake” reference contacts which automatically disqualified them. Contact your referees for confirmation and if not, simply put ‘Available on request”. However, your referees should be really available and must be people that know you very well and your competencies, your employers can go as far as calling your referees.
10. Proof Read
Before submitting your CV, make sure you go through it thoroughly and ask a friend or a job expert to aid you to criticize and cross-check your work to avoid unnecessary errors. Do not forget to write in an active voice. See an example of an active and passive voice;
- Passive Voice- The ball was thrown by John
- Active Voice- John threw the ball
Did you observe the difference? The active voice describes a sentence where the subject performs the action stated in the verb. The active voice is more straight forward than the passive voice.
Crafting an effective CV requires careful consideration of several key factors. Firstly, highlighting relevant skills, experiences, and achievements tailored to the specific job role is essential to capture the attention of potential employers. Additionally, ensuring clarity, conciseness, and professionalism in formatting and presentation enhances readability and professionalism. Moreover, using keywords and industry-specific language can optimize the CV for applicant tracking systems and increase visibility.
Furthermore, attention to detail, including grammar, spelling, and consistency, demonstrates professionalism and attention to detail. Lastly, proofreading as well as seeking feedback from trusted peers or professionals can provide valuable insights and ensure the CV effectively communicates your qualifications and aspirations. By considering these factors thoughtfully, you can create a compelling CV that effectively showcases your strengths and maximizes your chances of securing desired opportunities.